Monday, April 4, 2016


In a conversation with a young friend, I used the adage "familiarity breeds contempt";  I suppose I should feel complimented that he thought the words were mine but when I told him the quote was from Aesop, he said he'd never heard of the quote and did not understand it.  After a lengthy explanation and discussion, he said that he disagreed with the idea.  I said, "Apuleius countered with 'familiarity breeds contempt while rarity wins admiration', but I love Mark Twain's rejoinder 'familiarity breed contempt--and children'!"

At a recent gathering, I was standing with three young men.  We all were there as volunteers and we were waiting as we knew there was a meal to be served.

A young woman who had been instructing us about the volunteering tasks, asked the three of them, "Do you want something to eat?"  All of them said they did and she immediately brought plates of food to them.

I turned to the guys and asked, "Do you think she would serve me if I were a young, attractive man or would that come across as my being sarcastic?" One of them said, "You're so tiny she probably overlooked you!"   We all laughed and I stepped forward and asked her, "If I were a cute guy, would you offer me a plate?"

She said, "Oh, they are new here, I thought you would know to get something."

I told her that it was my FIRST time volunteering there, thus I wasn't aware of the protocol.  She said, "Oh, you look so familiar."  I must admit I was impressed with her quick recovery of excusing her behavior of her obvious unabashed preferential treatment of the young men while ignoring me.

I didn't tell her that she had seen me at a totally different kind of activity earlier in the week where I had formed a contemptuous opinion of her.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I like the "rarity wins admiration"! ML